RYA Northern Ireland recognises unsung heroes in newly launched Hall of Fame - Curly Morris OBE

RYA Northern Ireland inducted the first four people to its new Hall of Fame. The Hall of Fame was set up to recognise the contribution of people to the development of sailing in Northern Ireland. During an event at the Crowne Plaza, Belfast, on Thursday 23 March, the guests were presented with the awards by Lady Mary Peters and RYA’s Chair Chris Preston. Today’s special feature is Curly Morris OBE.
31 Mar 23
Curly Morris OBE getting inducted into the RYANI Hall of Fame, standing with Dame Mary Peters and RYA Chair Chris Preston

Curly Morris OBE has had a long and distinguished association with sailing as both a competitor and administrator.

A former pupil of Larne Grammar School, he began sailing at the age of 13 and built his first boat in 1959, “The Sharpey.”

As a top athlete he represented Ireland in no fewer than 23 World, European and other major international championships. His successes include Helmsman’s Championship of Ireland in 1967 and the Irish Finn Championship in 1969 and 1975, going on to compete in the Munich 1972 Olympics in the three-person keelboat, dragon class.

As well as competing and coaching, Morris was heavily involved in administration as a sailing secretary at East Antrim Boat Club, nationally during the formation of the Olympic Committee of the Irish Yachting Association, and internationally as a member of the technical committee of the International Optimist Dinghy Association, member of the IODA Executive Committee and in 2019 was elected as President of the International GP14 class.

In 2004 the RYA President, HRH The Princess Royal, presented the RYA Awards to Morris, recognizing his invaluable and outstanding contributions to the world of boating. He is also an expert as a hematology consultant and received an OBE in 2008 for services to medicine.

RYA Northern Ireland’s Chief Operating Officer Greg Yarnall said: “I am delighted that to recognise four very special people in our sailing community. We are proud to have welcomed the first inductees to our newly established Hall of Fame. 

“People are at the heart of our sport and it is fantastic to be able to celebrate some of those who have made such a hugely positive impact over many years.”